I take pictures. After all that I've learned recently, I should say
I'm a photographer.
But I'm more reluctant to call myself a photographer than a writer.
I have taken thousands of pictures, put some online, but printed and framed just a few. Once I gave one of my pictures away as a gift but doing that just seemed bold and pretentious (and distracting to me for every time I went to their house...where is it? where is it?).
Even in my own home, if I do print and frame some of my best shots, they stay leaning against a wall or a cabinet somewhere, gathering dust as I just can't bring myself to hang them up.
I noticed this after it happened recently and I just kept moving said unhung, matted and framed photos from room to room, wall to wall, cabinet to cabinet to lean against. It never dawned on me to actually hang them somewhere.
Because I'm afraid of what I'll see. Afraid that I won't like it. Afraid it won't be good enough. Afraid it won't look like all those gorgeous prints I always long to buy at art shows. Afraid that looking at my own artwork day after day will only spell
Fear holds me back. Fear keeps me prisoner. Fear must be dealt with or it's never going to go away.
I took a step and did things differently today. I took the prints, dusted off their frames, rearranged some spaces and now they sit on my headboard. Once they were there, I realized it only took 5 minutes to go from "hide these" to "these look nice here". It was painless. But it took me almost a year to get to those 5 minutes.
Fear no more.
Three things I know that you need to know, too.
1. Your work is better than you give yourself credit for.
2. You are always your own worst critic.
3. I'm living proof that it only takes 5 minutes to go from fear to victory.
Find something you made that needs your attention. Spend time doing whatever you need to so that you can display it proudly, send it off assuredly, or give it away as a gift with honor.
And then come back here and leave a comment telling what those 5 minutes looked like for you.
I guarantee you're going to like what you see.